There’s a pretty interesting feature (to me) over at Golf Digest’s website. They’ve asked several top players, or asked them over the years to rank their top-10 favorite courses in the United States. It’s an interesting look, because these are players with access to just about any course in the country. There isn’t quite as much variety as I would like to see, but maybe the best really are just the best. I’ve played only a dabbling of top courses in my lifetime, but here’s my top-10 anyway. If you’re wondering where Pine Valley and Augusta are, well, I haven’t played them, but thanks for asking.
1. Merion Golf Club (East Course)–Upon some reflection, this is easily the best course I’ve ever played.
2. Gallaway National Golf Club–First time I played Gallaway, I was careering it through 10 holes, then blew up. The second time, with less emotional swings I realized how good the golf course was.
3. Bob O’Link–My favorite place to experience. A men’s only club in Highland Park, Illinois. Amazing atmosphere and a pretty good golf course too.
4. Baltimore Country Club (Five Farms)–Maybe the best set of Par 4s I’ve ever encountered.
5. Shoreacres–A hidden gem for design enthusiasts, hardly gets any play, felt like I had the course to myself in the middle of the summer.
6. The New Course at Grand Cypress–There’s no rough on this golf course. There’s trouble, but the fringe from the putting green melds perfectly into the first tee and off you go. All short grass. For me, a dream come true.
7. Lost Dunes Golf Club–Kind enough to employ me for a summer, but also one of Tom Doak’s first great American courses.
8. The Olympic Club (Ocean Course)–The less famous of the two courses, but the golf in San Francisco is unique and just off the charts good. This was the best I’ve gotten to experience.
9. Caledonia Golf and Fish Club–I debated between this and Tidewater, but I think this is my favorite in the Myrtle Beach area. I just love the final shot coming over the water on 18 with the clubhouse in the background.
10. Bent Creek Country Club–Four years of college golf practice. Pretty good course, but all those laughs and misadventures deserve a spot in the top-10.
Feel free to share some of your favorites…
If you don’t feel like debating golf course rankings, or lamenting the fact that the now defunct Valley Forge Golf/Tennis and Yacht club is one of the 20 best courses you’ve ever played…here’s something else to think about. I’m sitting here, surrounded by a pretty good haul of Easter candy. It was a decent year. It made me think, what holiday has the best of it in terms of sweets or desserts? They all have their specialties. Easter brings out Cadbury Eggs, jelly beans, pastel colored M&M (they taste better!). There’s Halloween. There are Christmas cookies. Thanksgiving has a stranglehold on the pie market it seems like. You could bend the rules and say July 4th could have the S’More. Would Christmas lose points for the Fruitcake? How would you rate your holidays in terms of calorie binge delivery systems? If I was ranking quickly, I’d probably go:
- Summer 3-Day Weekends.